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Saturday, September 21, 2019

Colin Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick reaching out to QB-needy teams, in ‘best shape of his life’

Colin Kaepernick

There has been a rash of injuries to both starting and backup quarterbacks through the first two weeks of the NFL season, and one former NFC champion is still working out hoping for a call. His name is Colin Kaepernick.

SNY’s Chris Williamson spoke with a source close to Kaepernick this week who says the former San Francisco 49ers star is in “literally the best shape of his life.” With several quarterbacks going down already this year, Kaepernick’s agent has been reaching out to NFL teams.

Ben Roethlisberger will be out for the remainder of the season with an elbow injury, while Drew Brees (thumb) Nick Foles (collarbone) and Sam Darnold (mono) are all going to miss several more games. The New York Jets are actually on their third-string quarterback, as Trevor Siemian has been ruled out for the year after suffering a significant ankle injury in Monday night’s loss to the Cleveland Browns. Cam Newton also missed practice Tuesday with a foot injury, and his status remains up in the air.

Does that open up enough room for Kaepernick? The 31-year-old has not played in the NFL since 2016, and there have been no indications that teams are calling him to schedule workouts. Many believe Kaepernick has been blackballed by the NFL after he sued the league and agreed to a settlement, though Eric Reid did the same and eventually found work with the Carolina Panthers.

Kaepernick’s lawyer predicted that one of two teams would sign the former second-round pick to a contract over the winter, but nothing ever came of that. While his name comes up every year when quarterbacks start going down, there’s no reason to believe Kaepernick is any closer to signing with a team now than he was two or three years ago.

Colin Kaepernick seems to respond to Jay-Z’s partnership with NFL

Colin Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick posted a tweet on Friday that seems to be a response to Jay-Z’s partnership with the NFL.

The NFL and Jay-Z announced a partnership on August 13 through Jay-Z’s Roc Nation company. The announcement said “a major component of the partnership will be to nurture and strengthen community through football and music, including through the NFL’s Inspire Change initiative.”

Friday morning, the NFL announced they would be selling Inspire Change apparel and releasing “Songs of the Season” that would help fund and support the Inspire Change program.

Opponents to Jay-Z’s partnership with the NFL saw this as another sign that the music and business mogul had “sold out” and was only looking to enrich himself and the league.

Kaepernick seemed to address the matter with a tweet he posted Friday afternoon. The tweet included a photo of a passage from a book:

Applied in the context of Jay-Z’s partnership with the NFL, Kaepernick seems to be saying that Jay-Z and those working with him are only lining their pockets and not helping those in ghettos. Further, the passage seems to suggest there is an organized effort by an entire class (the black middle class) to keep other blacks in ghettos. That’s one heck of an accusation to think the black middle class or black intelligentsia is working in concert to keep other black people down.

Kaepernick seems to be against anyone working with the NFL to help communities and improve social justice.

What’s also odd is how some lash out at the NFL and Jay-Z for selling apparel to help spread their activism mission, but those same people have no problem with Kaepernick selling his own merchandise and pairing with Nike to do the same.

Colin Kaepernick’s girlfriend shoots down report that he spoke with Jay-Z

Colin Kaepernick

If there was any doubt that the NFL’s new social justice partnership with Jay-Z was forged without the input of Colin Kaepernick, someone close to him is confirming it.

TMZ reported early Wednesday that Jay-Z spoke with Kaepernick before making the deal with the NFL official, but Kaepernick’s girlfriend Nessa Diab called that a “lie,” sharing excerpts from other stories that dispute TMZ’s reporting.

It’s pretty clear that Kaepernick and those close to him would’ve liked for him to weigh in on the partnership. And if there was any doubt about whether he’s been involved or approves, another player close to Kaepernick made his negative feelings clear, too.

Donald Trump wants NFL team to sign Colin Kaepernick ‘if he’s good enough’

Colin Kaepernick

Despite very publicly disagreeing with Colin Kaepernick’s decision to kneel during the national anthem, US President Donald Trump says he believes an NFL team should sign the quarterback for the 2019 season with one important caveat — he has to be good enough.

A reporter asked Trump about Kaepernick on Friday, and the president said he would “love to see Kaepernick come in if he’s good enough.”

“I don’t want to see him come in because somebody thinks it’s a good PR move,” Trump said. “If he’s good enough, he will be in.”

Trump added that he knows many NFL owners personally and that they would sign Kaepernick “in a heartbeat” if he was good enough to be on a roster. Of course, many people believe Kaepernick has been out of the league since 2016 because owners disagree with his political views or fear potential backlash.

In the past, Trump has said NFL players who kneel during the national anthem should be cut by their respective teams. He also bragged about his supposed role in Kaepernick not being signed, so even saying he would like to see him in the NFL “if he’s good enough” is a change in tone.

Colin Kaepernick’s Nike commercial nominated for Emmy

Colin Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick was at the center of a Nike ad spot that became extremely popular after airing at the start of the NFL season last year, and the commercial has been nominated to win a 2019 Emmy.

The 2019 Emmy nominations were announced on Tuesday, and Nike’s “Dream Crazy” ad has an opportunity to take home the award for Outstanding Commercial. The Nike ad, which is narrated by Kaepernick, also features sports icons Serena Williams, LeBron James and Shaquem Griffin. You can see it below:

Nike received plenty of backlash last year for using Kaepernick to commemorate the 30th anniversary of its “Just Do It” slogan, but the social media numbers indicated it was a smart move. An Emmy nomination doesn’t hurt, either.

Colin Kaepernick sits courtside for Game 4 of Blazers-Warriors series

Colin Kaepernick

There was a familiar face sitting near the Golden State Warriors’ bench during Game 4 of the Western Conference finals on Monday night in Portland.

Fans and some media members spotted former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick sitting next to the scorer’s table:

Kaepernick, best known for protesting during the national anthem in the 2016 NFL season to bring attention to social inequality and racial injustice, has mostly avoided headlines the last few months. He and Eric Reid settled their collusion case with the NFL in February, leading to reports that he would likely make an NFL return in the future.

The 31-year-old was a star basketball player in high school, in addition to his success in baseball and football.

Eric Reid defends Colin Kaepernick, jokes he will give teams his number

Colin Kaepernick

Carolina Panthers safety Eric Reid continues to stand by Colin Kaepernick.

Reid responded Friday to a Q&A on the Panthers’ website asking if Carolina would sign Kaepernick. Writer Bill Voth characterized it as unlikely, stating that there are questions to what Kaepernick can do while citing him losing his job to Blaine Gabbert in 2016 as evidence that he had slipped as a quarterback.

Reid strongly objected to this characterization and defended his former San Francisco teammate on Twitter.

Reid and Kaepernick are forever linked as the two players who prominently knelt during the national anthem early on. Now that the former San Francisco quarterback has settled his collusion case against the NFL, there is some belief that a return to the league is more likely than ever. Reid, for one, is quite eager to see it happen, but it remains unclear how realistic it is and how interested any teams would be.